Chery South Africa, together with Lions Rugby and Champions Drive, have joined hands to facilitate access to the sport of rugby to communities who may never have had the opportunity to enjoy the full stadium experience. The company this week announced its support of Champions Drive, an organisation geared toward developing sport in schools and clubs with a view of not only encouraging participation, but also involving parents and caregivers.

One of the ways in which Champion Drive involves children and families in the exciting world of sport is to provide families complimentary access to large sports events. The aim is to bring children from poor households and their families to a full-on fan experience at live sports events,

Chery South Africa’s partnership with Champions Drive is an outflow of its support of the Lions. In September last year, Chery announced its three-year involvement with the Johannesburg franchise, this making them the official vehicle sponsor. True to the automobile manufacturer’s impact to the communities they serve, the journey with Champions Drive resonates with their slogan #WithCheryWithLove.

Through the Champion Drive partnership, Chery invited 70 scholars from Chief Luthuli Primary school in Benoni to the recent Vodacom United Rugby Championship match between the Emirates Lions and Vodacom Bulls hosted at the iconic Emirates Airline Park. Scholars from the school were afforded the opportunity to be part of the on-field pre-match festivities, creating an unforgettable experience for all involved.

Champions Drive’s Director David Vuyo Mashiyi said that while it was only a six-hour experience for the children, it served as an escape from their everyday circumstances.

“We would like to thank Lions Rugby and Chery for their eagerness to be involved in an experience that will change the sport and children’s lives forever. The trip to Emirates Airline Park will inspire children to dream of being sport stars and playing for Lions one day,” he said.

“In addition, an event such as this affords these children the opportunity to escape from their realities often marred by domestic violence and the exposure to drugs and other societal ills,” he concluded.

Deputy General Manager of Chery South, Mr. Tony Liu expressed his excitement for future initiatives such as these and the opportunity for the vehicle brand to make a positive impact on communities.

“We are proud of our partnership with Lions Rugby and Champions Drive and look forward to more opportunities to involve families and those less fortunate in the wonderful sport of rugby,” The Champions Drive visit to Emirates Airline Park is a continuation of a series of community engagements driven by the brand.  In December 2023, Chery and Lions Rugby put smiles on the faces of little patients at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital’s children’s ward by spreading the festive joy through presents donated by Lions fans during rugby games.


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